Jalapeno Popper Pasta Salad – This pasta salad tastes just like a jalapeno popper!  Plenty of rotini noodles covered in creamy jalapeno ranch, then loaded up with chopped jalapeno, crispy bacon, cheese, and croutons!

jalapeno popper pasta salad

I feel like this salad really needs no introduction.  It is just loaded up with good things!

Jalapeno poppers have always been something I crave when it gets warmer outside – so, why not turn a favorite snack into the ultimate side dish?

I’ve had jalapeno poppers two ways – the kind that are stuffed with cream cheese then wrapped with bacon and grilled.

Then, of course the delicious fast food kind that are packed with melty cheddar cheese and typically dipped in a ranch dressing dip to cool the heat!

Have you had both?  Which is your fave??  Me?  I can’t decide.  I love them all.


pasta salad with ranch and bacon

So, this pasta salad is really a mix-up of both kinds of jalapeno poppers.

This rotini pasta is coated in the ahhhmmmaazzzing jalapeno ranch that I made with these Jalapeno Ranch Chicken Tacos.

I add about 1/2 cup of fresh chopped jalapeno, you can also use jarred if that’s what you have on hand!

If you are like heck no that looks too spicy – you can use regular ranch dressing instead of the jalapeno kind, and use a tad less chopped jalapeno.

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of crazy spicy things, and I find this to be just right as is.

We also have cubes of pepper jack and cheddar cheese in here – you know I am going to always find a way to cheese it up.  One cheese wasn’t good enough for me, and these are both amazing in here.

Last but not least, crushed garlic croutons!!  These are what remind me a little of that crispy fried fast food jalapeno popper that I love so much.

Guys.  Don’t skip the two cheeses, and don’t skip the garlic croutons.  Trust me.  The flavor is pretty much insane! In a good way, of course.

jalapeno popper pasta salad

It’s finally warm enough here to go enjoy the outdoors this weekend – woot!

So, we’re going to the lake – and this pasta salad is coming along for the ride!

Don’t forget to find the jalapeno ranch dressing recipe right HERE!


No ratings yet

Jalapeno Popper Pasta Salad

Servings 10



  • 1 Cup Ranch Dressing, Homemade or Store Bought
  • 2 Medium Jalapeños, Stems and seeds removed
  • 2 Tablespoons Lime Juice
  • 1 Clove Garlic


  • 1 Pound Rotini Pasta
  • 1/2 Cup Chopped Jalapenos
  • 1/2 Cup Cubed or Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/2 Cup Cubed or Shredded Pepper Jack Cheese
  • 8-10 Slices Bacon, Cooked and Crumbled
  • 1 Cup Garlic Croutons, Crushed



  • Combine the ranch dressing, jalapenos, lime juice, and garlic in a high powered blender or food processor. Pulse until completely smooth.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Cook the rotini according to package directions.  Drain pasta, run under cold water until completely cool, set aside.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the pasta and jalapeno ranch.  Add the jalapenos, cheddar, pepper jack, and bacon, stir well to combine.
  • Stir in half of the crushed croutons.  Top the pasta salad with remaining croutons before serving.  Chill until ready to serve.


NOTE:  You can leave the seeds in the jalapeno ranch if you prefer it spicier!  
Like this? Rate & review this recipe below!

I shared this recipe over at The Weekend Potluck – check it out!


Recipe adapted from A Bird and a Bean.

Hey! Nice to meet you! I'm Nichole!

Welcome to The Salty Marshmallow! I'm a mom, animal lover, photographer, & kitchen mess-maker. Here you will find the result of my decades-long passion for chasing the best flavors in the kitchen, all meant to be cooked by regular people with busy lives just like you and me.

Related Recipes

Rate & Review!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. Hi Nichole. I want to make the jalapeño popper pasta salad one day ahead for a party. Should I withhold the croutons until I’m ready to serve it? I don’t want them to get mushy. Thank you.

  2. What can I substitute for the ranch? I hate ranch and have never eaten jalapeno poppers with ranch. Does the recipe still work if I just leave out the ranch entirely?